Fans of the late comedian Norm Macdonald will get to see him perform one last time, according to his sister-in-law Joyce Napier.
Eight months after the Saturday Night Live alum died of cancer at the age of 61 following a nine-year battle with leukemia, the Canadian TV journalist, 63, revealed her husband’s brother secretly recorded a stand-up special.
‘It turns out Norm left an hour of new material behind, recorded in his apartment during the lockdown,’ she wrote. ‘It’ll be a Netflix comedy special soon. ‘So, we have that. Which is precisely what Norm wanted.’
One final laugh: Fans of the late comedian Norm Macdonald will get to see him perform one last time, according to his sister-in-law Joyce Napier; seen in 2008
Napier wrote a tribute to Macdonald for CTV News, in which she described how the former Weekend Update legend’s family and friends came together for a belated memorial service in Los Angeles last weekend.
‘He chose to die privately, his cancer undisclosed to all but a tiny family circle. In an era when people write soul-baring essays about a torn rotator cuff, he kept his condition a secret from just about everyone,’ she quipped.
Napier continued: ‘We’d celebrated Norm… It was poignant, it was funny, it was lovely, and he’s gone.’
Devastating loss: Eight months after the Saturday Night Live alum died of cancer at the age of 61 following a nine-year battle with leukemia, the Canadian TV journalist, 63, revealed her husband’s brother secretly recorded a stand-up special; seen in 2003
David Spade said the recording ‘definitely’ made him cry as he watched the special alongside Macdonald’s closest friends on Wednesday’s episode of his Fly on the Wall podcast.
In September, Macdonald’s longtime producing partner and friend Lori Jo Hoekstra was with him when he passed.
He told Deadline that Macdonald had been battling cancer for nearly a decade but remained adamant about keeping his diagnosis from family, friends and fans.
Mourning: Speaking of the event, David Spade (pictured last week) said he ‘definitely cried’ watching the special alongside Macdonald’s closest friends
‘He was most proud of his comedy,’ Hoekstra said. ‘He never wanted the diagnosis to affect the way the audience or any of his loved ones saw him. Norm was a pure comic. He once wrote that ‘a joke should catch someone by surprise, it should never pander.’ He certainly never pandered. Norm will be missed terribly.’
The famous comedian was best known for his work on Saturday Night Live where he worked as a cast member from 1993- 1998 and starred as the show’s anchor on its Weekend Update segment.
In 2004, Comedy Central named him as one of the 100 Greatest Stand-Ups of All Time. Many famous comedians have named Macdonald’s dry and witty deadpan comedy as an inspiration to their own careers.
Macdonald began his comedic career performing the circuit of comedy clubs in Canada where he developed his signature deadpan style. He was a contestant on Star Search in 1990 and secured his first television writing job on The Dennis Miller Show.
He then went on to write for Roseanne from 1992- 1993 before he joined the SNL cast.
In September, his death and secret cancer diagnosis was confirmed by his longtime producing partner and friend Lori Jo Hoekstra (pictured: Macdonald co-hosting the view on September 13, 2018)
Chevy Chase, who created SNL’s Weekend Update, named Macdonald as the best anchor to ever host the segment. Macdonald’s time at the helm of Weekend Update pushed the popular news commentary away from Chase’s slapstick comedy take on to the more politically charged sharp approach that is still seen today.
He was noted for his strong commentary on O.J. Simpson despite reported instance from NBC executives to tone it down. After Simpson was found not guilty, Macdonald joked, ‘Well, it is finally official: Murder is legal in the state of California.’
His sharp comedic criticism is believed to have led to his firing from the show in 1999. It is also alleged to have been one of the few decisions regarding the show that was not left to producer Lorne Michaels.
Macdonald was succeeded by comedian Colin Quinn who took over the coveted post.
Macdonald said he had arrived early to tape a segment, just hours after he told The Hollywood Reporter he wanted Louis CK and Roseanne Barr to get together and commiserate because they had lost everything to the #MeToo movement. (pictured: Macdonald, left, on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon, right, in 2017)
The stand-up comedian went on to launch two failed sitcoms in the early 2000s: Norm and A Minute With Stan Hooper. But his career was eventually revived as he went on to star in a long list of popular movies and television shows up until 2020.
He had recurring roles on The Middle from 2010- 2018, Mike Tyson Mysteries from 2014- 2020, Sunnyside in 2015, Skylanders Academy from 2016- 2018, and The Orville from 2017- 2019, among others.
Macdonald often acted alongside fellow former SNL cast members in his films such as Billy Madison starring Adam Sandler, The Animal starring Rob Schneider, Dirty Work with Chevy Chase, and Dr. Dolittle starring Eddie Murphy.
His expansive career also had him in commercials and his podcast Norm Macdonald Live.
During an appearance on Conan in 2014, Macdonald told what many have since considered to be his best joke. He rambled on for several minutes about shaggy-dog tale about Quebec, beluga whales, and baby dolphins as the audience and host Conan O’Brien erupt in laughter.
The popular comedian made frequent appearances on late-night televisions shows where he was known for consistently having the hosts cracking up. But several years he was cancelled from appearing on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon due to remarks he made about the #MeToo movement during an interview with The Hollywood Reporter.
Macdonald said he was ‘happy the #MeToo movement had slowed down a little bit,’ claiming that people used to receive a second chance, but that the #MeToo movement gave ‘no forgiveness.’
Macdonald said he had linked up Louis C.K, who was accused of sexual misconduct, and Roseanne Barr, who was fired from her show in May for racist comments, so they could talk about what had happened.
‘There are very few people that have gone through what they have, losing everything in a day,’ he said.
‘Of course, people will go, “What about the victims?” But you know what? The victims didn’t have to go through that.’
Macdonald was slammed online for his remarks, by people who thought he was dismissing those who had revealed themselves to be victims of sexual assault, and by others who saw his comments as trying to defend CK and Barr.
He then went on Howard Stern’s radio show and told him that his appearance on The Tonight Show had been cancelled because his remarks on the social movement had made senior producers cry.
He later apologized for his comments in a tweet: ‘Roseanne and Louis have both been very good friends of mine for many years. They both made terrible mistakes and I would never defend their actions. If my words sounded like I was minimizing the pain that their victims feel to this day, I am deeply sorry.’
According to his IMDB page, the Canadian star was slated to voice Grandpaws in the ‘animated re imagining of one of the largest wildfire evacuations in Canadian history’ titled Back Home Again which is currently in post-production.
- Fly on the Wall with Dana Carvey and David Spade: Jim Downey on Apple Podcasts
- Why Norm Macdonald’s New Talk Show Won’t Target Trump – The Hollywood Reporter
- Norm Macdonald on Twitter: "Roseanne and Louis have both been very good friends of mine for many years. They both made terrible mistakes and I would never defend their actions. If my words sounded like I was minimizing the pain that their victim …
- Deadline – Hollywood Entertainment Breaking News